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November 04, 1999 - Image 15

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The Michigan Daily, 1999-11-04

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* S in eard -
NBA BASKETBALL PORTLAND 121,
BOSTON 112, L.A. Clippers 98
Washington 101 L.A. LAKERS 103,
CLEVELAND 97, Vancouver 88
New Jersey 90 NHL HOCKEY
ORLANDO 103, WASHINGTON 3.
Detroit 94 Ottawa 1
New York 84, Tampa Bay 4,
CHICAGO 74 ATLANTA 1

Toronto 6,
CAROLINA 0
Buffalo 3,
DALLAS 1
Los Angeles 1,
DETROIT 1
NEW JERSEY 3,
Montreal 2
N.Y. RANGERS 3,
N Y Ilanders 3

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Tracking 'M' teams
Check out the Michigan hockey team as it takes on
Ohio State on Friday night at Yost Ice Arena at 7:35
p.m. The Wolverines face the Buckeyes at home on
Friday and in Columbus on Saturday.
Thursday
November 4, 1999 I5A

Brea ot

Ifi - Tournaments
Soccer tourney
is murderous

Johnson 'as
ground on
punt returns
By Andy Latack
D ily Sports Editor
Generally, it's a good idea to avoid bugging your
arotball coach. Especially when that coach is Lloyd
rr.
But for DiAllo Johnson, pestering Carr worked
like a charm. The senior had been aching to handle
Michigan's punt return duties, and he had no prob-
em giving Carr an earful about it-- day after day.
"Every day, I kept bugging him," Johnson said.
"I kept asking him and finally he said, 'OK, I'm
going to give you a chance."'
Johnson's chance came against Indiana last
week, when he returned four of Indiana's five
punts. But it was one return - a runback that
*ppears as nothing but a 10-yard gain in the boxs-
core - that made Carr happy he had heeded
Johnson's requests.
Early in the second quarter, Johnson caught his
second punt of the day on Michigan's 23-yard line.
With Indiana's punt coverage slow in getting down
the field, Johnson avoided a tackler on each side by
finding a seam in the middle of the coverage.
Aided by good blocking, Johnson dodged
defenders and sprinted virtually untouched up the
,eld on his way to what appeared to be a 77-yard
uchdown.
But shortly after Johnson crossed the fifty, a flag
dropped back at the Michigan 33. The Wolverines
had been flagged for an illegal block in the back,
negating Johnson's fabulous run and giving them
the ball back at their own 23.
u "It is certainly a shame that we committed that
penalty," Carr said. "It would have been good to
see him score a touchdown on a return."
Johnson was in the end zone, being mobbed by
his teammates, when he saw the flag.
I "After we celebrated, we looked down and saw a
ot of flags on the field." Johnson said. "I was tired
and disappointed."
But while Johnson's return was called back, he
still proved to Carr and everyone else that he can
make some waves on Michigan's punt return unit.
Which is welcome news because Michigan's
punt returns have been more like punt catches this
season. The Wolverines are second-to-last in the
Big Ten in that category, averaging just 7.7 yards
ner punt return.
Marcus Knight has been handling most of the
punts this season, but has had trouble breaking any
of them for long gains. He is averaging just under
three yards per return, and many times the oppo-
nent's coverage is upon him before he can do any-
thing with the ball.
We've played some good punters and they have a
lot of hang time on the ball," Johnson said of
Michigan's difficulties. "The hang time has a lot to
do with it when you're returning punts."
Johnson should know. As a fifth-year senior, he
as seen it all in his time at Michigan.
Johnson caught a touchdown pass in Michigan's
Citrus Bowl victory last season, and the 6-foot-3,
201-pounder headed into the offseason primed to
be a major contributor to Michigan's receiving
corps.
But after suffering a knee injury during offsea-

By Dan Williams
Tlie good news for the Michigan
soccer team as it heads into this
weekend's Big Ten tournament in
Bloomington, is that it doesn't have
to worry about Indiana, Purdue, or
Northwestern, who didn't make the
field.
Theb ad new s is that seven other
teams, including Michigan's first
round opponent, Michigan State,
also have their eves on the confer-
encc crown.
Here's a preview of all of
Michigan's potential weekend foes.
The teams are listed in reverse order
from bottom to top. The Wolverines
are the No. 2 team in the conference.
No. 8 WISCONSIN (3-6-1 BIG TEN,
9-7-4 OVERALL): The Badgers were
ranked as high as No. 12 this year
before the Big Ten season wore them
down.
Wisconsin's Oct. 17 upset of
Michigan not only cost the
Wolverines a share of the conference

championship, it propelled the
Badgers into the tournament over
Indiana.
"They have the ability to beat any-
body," Michigan coach Debbie ,
Belkin said. "They make the field
smaller by applying defensive pres-
sure.
No. 7 MNC HIC S r:av (3-6-1, 6-
11-3): When they meet the Spartans
at 3 p.m. on Friday, the Wolverines
will be playing a team that barely
stumbled into the tournament,
Michigan State lost Its last five
games in the Big, Ten and its last two
non-conference.
Junior goal ic Sara Kloosterman
may be the Spartan's best player. She
compiled an .873 save percentage in
conference games.
"They improved a lot this year,
they try to possess the ball, and they
have a good forward in Jessica
Moorman," Belkin said.
No. 6 ILLINOiS (3-5-2, 11-7-2):
The Illini could be the surprise team
See MATCHUPS, Page 18A

As3-seed, stickers
face tough going
By David Roth Hawkeyes 1-0 on October 8 at home.
Daily Sports Writer If Michigan does make it pas
The Michigan field hockey team will Northwestern and Penn State, the
knock sticks in Columbus this weekend would play the winner of the Iowa versu
in the Big Ten field hockey Tournament, Michigan State-Ohio State game.
where rock-paper-scissors teams Iowa, After losing to Penn State this pas
Penn State, and Michigan lead the pack. Friday, Michigan lost its opportunity t
The Wolverines are seeded third out of get a buy for the first game of the tour
six teams in the conference with a 7-3 nament. Coach Marcia Pankratz talke
record in the Big Ten. about how they extra games will affe
Tomorrow at 2 p.m. at the Woody her team's chances of winning the Bi
Hayes Athletic Center, the Wolverines Ten Tournament.
will take on Northwestern. Michigan has "It makes it very very difficult. It
already beaten the Wildcats twice this hard -three matches against very ver
year, with 2-1 victory on Oct. 10 and a very good teams three days in a row.1
convincing 5-1 victory on Oct. 22. just puts us behind the eight-ball."
Northwestern has yet to win in the Big Pankratz further explained that sh
Ten this year, with a 0-10 record, 4-13 remains optimistic about Michigan
overall. chances of winning.
The third seed, however, is probably "It's not impossible. Its something W
not where the Wolverines want to be. can do. We're a good enough team and
If they do win on Friday, their next fit enough team to do it. It's just now w
game is Saturday against Penn State. have an extra team to have to organiz
Although the Nittany Lions are the No. 2 for. We'll do the best we can and hope
seed, they have soundly doubled up the fully it will work out."
Wolverines both times they have played The top three teams are quite capabl
them this year. of beating each other. This season, Pen
Oct. 3, Michigan lost 2-1, and Oct. 29 State has beaten Michigan, Michiga
they were pulverized in a 4-2 game that has beaten Iowa, and Iowa has beate
was not as close as the score shows. The Penn State. But whoever does win wi
Wolverines would probably prefer play- receive an automatic bid to the newt
ing Iowa, the first seed, with whom they expanded 16-team NCAA Tournament
split 1-0 games. Michigan was the only "It's a tough conference;" said Pen
team this season to blemish Iowa's other- State coach Char Morrett. "It's nev
wise perfect record, as they outlasted the easy going anywhere."

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DANA LINNANE/Daisy
"Right now, I'm feeling good, about 100 percent, and I'm ready to contribute," said Michigan's punt-returner,
DiAllo Johnson, who would have returned a punt for a touchdown last week, had a teammate not been flagged.

son conditioning, Johnson has seen limited action,
both as a punt returner and at receiver. He has only
neared full strength in recent weeks.
"At the beginning of the season, I was disap-
pointed I couldn't help the team out," Johnson said.
"Right now, I'm feeling good, about 100 percent.
and I'm ready to contribute."
Carr has taken notice, and plans to continue to
use Johnson after his strong, performance against
the Hoosiers.
"He has always had a knack (for returning
punts)," Carr said. "DiAllo doesn't have great.

great speed, but he can make you miss."
Just ask Indiana.
But despite his near-big play last week, Johnson
doesn't look to take over the game whenever he
lines up to return punts.
On the contrary, he's just trying to save the
offense a little work.
"Coach Carr just preached 'Get 10 yards if you
can,' because that's one less first down the offense
has to get," said Johnson, who is averaging 12.1
yards per attempt. "That's my goal every time I
touch the ball on a punt return."

Maize Rage
*tees coming
ByMarik Fraicescut"
Daily Sports Writer
Students who went to pick up their
basketball season tickets on Monday
found that they didn't receive a 'Maize
Rage' T-shirt.
The free giveaways with student sea-
son basketball ticket purchases won't be
'Wready for pickup until Nov. 9.
Students can pick up the shirt by
showing their student identification at
the marketing office in the back of the
Michigan Ticket Office on 1000 S. State
St.
The office plans to have a station at
Crisler Arena to distribute the shirts
starting with Michigan's first regular sea-
son game against Oakland on Nov. 19.
"Nike is making the shirts which
should be extremely exciting; Michigan
Marketing Director Tom Brooks said. "I
haven't seen the finial product, but I
know they are yellow.'
The Michigan Ticket Office has about
two-thirds of the student season ticket
packages still available for $100 for 19

N -I

Think about it.
Everyday University of Michigan loculty, stall and students produce over 1 tons of trosh
and 4 tons of recyclable paper.
Help reduce waste by buying less, recycling more and purchasing products made from

recycled m aterials.
Make a pledge, make it happen.
America Recycles Day, November 15

NM

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